Story by Lisa Rice
Warwick Town Clerk Eileen Astorino, along with several other Orange County Town Clerks, is collecting items to offer relief to residents of Puerto Rico, Astorino stated at the Town Board meeting on Thurs., Sept. 28. While no monetary donations can be accepted, items including bottled water, diapers, aspirin, batteries, bug spray, and non-perishable food items may be dropped off at the Warwick Town Hall, located at 132 Kings Hwy., weekdays between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. The Orange County Sheriff’s office will also accept donated items 24/7. A complete list of items is available at the Town website.
Visioning the Future
Warwick Town Supervisor Michael Sweeton urges residents to take the Warwick Valley Community Visioning 2GETHER survey at www.community2gether.org. The survey allows residents to give their input on issues involving the Town and what they would like to see in the future. Taking just a few minutes to complete, the results will be pertinent to planning where Warwick is going.
Help Homeless Pets
Town Councilman Floyd DeAngelo reported that the Warwick Valley Humane Society is currently housing 176 assorted animals. In addition to accepting donations of money, food and supplies, they are looking for volunteers to walk dogs, read to homeless animals and help bring kittens to Mount Alverno residents for cuddling.
Howl-A-Ween will be held on Sat., Oct. 29 from 12 noon to 2 p.m. and will include a scavenger hunt and costume parade. The cost is $20 per dog.
The Humane Society will offer a rabies clinic on Sun., Oct. 8 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon.
Cornell Co-Op to Grow Hemp
Town Councilman Russell Kowal recently attended a presentation by the Orange County Chapter of Cornell Cooperative Extension in Goshen and learned about a test program to grow hemp. Since hemp has not been allowed to be grown in the United States for the past 80 years, according to Kowal, no one is sure how it will grow.
“They’re going to wing it,” he said. “It will be interesting to see how it develops.” Twenty acres will be planted and harvested to be used for commercial purposes. Hemp can be used to make rope, cloth, paper, and insulation.
2018 Budget Planning Underway
Sweeton stated that planning is well underway for the 2018 budget. The Town has received all requests and is working to remain within the tax cap, which is $250,000. Contractual employee raises and retirement/healthcare contributions utilize $220,000, which leaves just $30,000 to meet all the other requirements and does not allow the Town to invest in equipment or road maintenance. The Supervisor also pointed out that Warwick is the biggest town in the county that provides police services and has the second lowest tax rate.
He also reminded residents that the community room at the Wickham Woodlands is available to rent for a modest fee for parties, ceremonies, etc., and accommodates 100 people.
Next Town Board Meeting
The next Town Board meeting will be held on Thurs., Oct. 12 at 7:30 p.m. in Town Hall, located at 132 Kings Hwy. in Warwick.